Avoid transmission of COVID-19 in your department by allowing non-essential employees to work from home while still securely handling FOIA requests (be sure to confer with your organization’s work from home policy).
If your agency is considering implementing a work-from-home policy during the COVID-19 social-distancing period, here are some things you can do to get your employees set up for success:
- To continue “face-to-face” and real-time communications, you can utilize one of the many video conferencing and instant messaging tools available. GovQA uses GoToMeeting and Slack. Here are some you can download today:
- GoToMeeting: https://support.goto.com/meeting/help/download-now-g2m010002
- Slack: https://slack.com/solutions/remote-work
- Google Hangouts: https://gsuite.google.com/products/meet/
- Zoom: https://zoom.us/download
- Microsoft Teams (free 6-month trial available for governments working from home due to COVID-19): https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/MicrosoftTeams/g1-trial-license
- Make sure your employees have a contact list with emails and cell phone numbers for everyone on your team.
- Make sure your employees have all the usernames and passwords they will need from home. GovQA recommends this password keeper tool for best security (instead of writing passwords down):
- Lastpass: https://lastpass.com/create-account.php
- Don’t forget to bring your laptop powercords home with you!
- Records custodians using GovQA’s platform can continue securely handling public records requests on their laptop or pc at home as long as they have internet access.
- Consider reviewing the GovQA training materials available on how to post Trending Topics and FAQs to your public portal. These GovQA software functions are a great way to proactively serve health and safety information to the public; deflect potentially voluminous FOIA requests related to COVID-19; and allow the public to automatically “follow” updates you post. Learn more here.
You can view training materials for these here: